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New and growing inequalities: A challenge for the social, economic and democratic development of the European Union

11 November 2010, Brussels, Belgium
European Economic and Social Committee,
Jacques Delors Building, 99 rue Belliard, 6th floor


On 11 November 2010, the European Commission organised the conference entitled "New and growing inequalities: A challenge for the social, economic and democratic development of the European Union", in response to the new "Europe 2020" strategy with its emphasis on "inclusive growth - a high-employment economy delivering economic, social and territorial cohesion". It was opened by a speech of Pervenche Béres, Chairwoman of the European Parliament Committee for Employment and Social Affairs and attended by more than 150 guests.

The aim of this conference was to give an overview of the contribution of research in social sciences and the humanities to the analysis of the current challenges. It was an opportunity:

  • To discuss the "state of affairs" and trends in inequalities across Europe (including their expected evolution over the next few years);
  • To analyse why reducing inequalities should constitute an important element in European politics and policies;
  • To give visibility to the best research results coming from Framework Programme projects in social sciences and the humanities in this field;
  • To discuss which European and national policies have the greatest potential to reduce inequalities.